Native American Voices: Early Childhood

Picture Books and Board Books by Indigenous writers and authors.

Updated October 27, 2023
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Native American language primer, teaching color vocabulary. Based on the tribal Coyote and Fox story.
Native American language primer, teaching animal vocabulary. Based on the tribal Crater Lake creation story.
Native American language primer, teaching numberical vocabulary. Based on the tribal plank house.
Autumn Peltier, water warrior
Lindstrom, Carole
From New York Times bestselling picture book author Carole Lindstrom and illustrator Bridget George comes Autumn Peltier, Water Warrior, an inspiring picture book biography about two Indigenous Rights Activists, Josephine Mandamin and Autumn Peltier. ...
Flett, Julie
Bowwow powwow : bagosenjige-niimi'idim
Child, Brenda J.
Windy Girl is blessed with a vivid imagination. From Uncle she gathers stories of long-ago traditions, about dances and sharing and gratitude. Windy can tell such stories herself-about her dog, Itchy Boy, and the way he dances to request a treat and how he wriggles with joy in response to, well,...
Buffalo wild!
Havrelock, Deidre
An exuberant celebration of the Buffalo's return to the wild. Since Declan was born, his kokum has shared her love of Buffalo through stories and art. But Declan longs to see real Buffalo. Then one magical night, herds of the majestic creatures stampede down from the sky. That's when...
A day with Yayah
Campbell, Nicola I.
A cheerful story from a renowned Canadian children's book author and an award-winning illustrator "Radiant picture book" -Quill & Quire Set in the Nicola Valley, British Columbia, in Canada's westernmost province, a First Nations family goes on an...
Dragonfly kites
Highway, Tomson
Dragonfly Kites, now available in paperback, is the second book in Tomson Highway's magical Songs of the North Wind trilogy. Like Caribou Song, it has a bilingual text, written in English and Cree. And Highway once again brilliantly evokes the very essence of childhood as he...
The first blade of sweetgrass : a Native American story
Greenlaw, Suzanne
Musquon must overcome her impatience while learning to distinguish sweetgrass from other salt marsh grasses, but slowly the spirit and peace of her surroundings speak to her, and she gathers sweetgrass as her ancestors have done for centuries, leaving the first blade she sees to grow for future...
Fry bread : a Native American family story
Maillard, Kevin Noble
Winner of the 2020 Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal A 2020 American Indian Youth Literature Picture Book Honor Winner "A wonderful and sweet book . . . Lovely stuff." --The New York Times Book Review Told in lively and powerful...
The girl and the wolf
Vermette, Katherena
While picking berries with her mother, a little girl wanders too far into the woods. When she realizes she is lost, she begins to panic. A large grey wolf makes a sudden appearance between some distant trees. Using his sense of smell, he determines where she came from and decides to help her....
Go show the world : a celebration of Indigenous heroes
Kinew, Wab
"We are a people who matter." Inspired by President Barack Obama's Of Thee I Sing, Go Show the World is a tribute to historic and modern-day Indigenous heroes, featuring important figures such as Tecumseh, Sacagawea and former NASA astronaut John Herrington. ...
Grandma's tipi : a present-day Lakota story
Nelson, S. D.
A young girl spends the summer at her grandmother's home on the Standing Rock Reservation in this illustrated, heartwarming family story from acclaimed, award-winning author-artist S. D. Nelson. Now that Clara is almost in third grade, she's finally old enough to...
Johnny's pheasant
Minnema, Cheryl
An encounter with a pheasant (which may or may not be sleeping) takes a surprising turn in this sweetly serious and funny story of a Native American boy and his grandma   "Pull over, Grandma! Hurry!" Johnny says. Grandma does, and Johnny runs to show her what he...
A letter for Bob
Rogers, Kim
With humor and heart, and brought to life by Jonathan Nelson's warm, distinctive artwork, Kim Rogers's A Letter for Bob celebrates the treasured cars that carry us through our most meaningful childhood moments. Ever since the day Mom and Dad brought Bob home from the car...
Little bird's day
Morgan, Sally
★ "Pairing a lilting text and culturally resonant illustrations, this striking work soars." --Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review ★ "From two Indigenous creators, this gorgeous glimpse at the land Down Under will have broad appeal." --Horn Book, Starred Review A joyful,...
Little you
Van Camp, Richard.
"You are life and breath adored. You are us and so much more..." Richard Van Camp, internationally renowned storyteller and bestselling author of the hugely successful Welcome Song for Baby: A Lullaby for Newborns, has partnered with award-winning illustrator Julie Flett to create a tender...
Look, Grandma! Ni, Elisi!
Coulson, Art
Celebrate diversity, math, and the power of storytelling! Bo wants to find the perfect container to show off his traditional marbles for the Cherokee national Holiday. It needs to be just the right size: big enough to fit all the marbles, but not too big to fit in his family's...
May we have enough to share
Van Camp, Richard
Award-winning author Richard Van Camp wrote this book to express his gratitude for all that surrounds him and his family. The strength of their connections, the nature that provides for them, the love that is endless. Complemented by photos from photographers who celebrate their own...
Molly of Denali. Molly and the great one
Bill, Sovereign
An action-adventure comedy that follows the adventures of feisty and resourceful ten-year-old Molly Mabray, an Alaska Native girl, her dog Suki, and friends Tooey and Trini on their adventures in epically beautiful Alaska.
My heart fills with happiness = Nijiikendam
Gray Smith, Monique
★ "A quiet loveliness, sense of gratitude, and--yes--happiness emanate from this tender celebration of simple pleasures." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review The sun on your face. The smell of warm bannock baking in the oven. Holding the hand of someone you love. What fills your...
My powerful hair
Lindstrom, Carole
From the award-winning and bestselling author of We Are Water Protectors comes an empowering picture book about family history, self-expression, and reclaiming your identity Our ancestors say our hair is our memories, our source of...
Nibi's water song
Tenasco, Sunshine
Choices, Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) This bright and vivacious book from two Native creators celebrates the energy, moxie, and determination of water activists of all ages. When Nibi, an Indigenous girl, turns the tap in her house, only mucky brown water comes...
Powwow day
Sorell, Traci
In this uplifting, contemporary Native American story, River is recovering from illness and can't dance at the powwow this year. Will she ever dance again? River wants so badly to dance at powwow day as she does every year. In this uplifting and contemporary picture book perfect...
Harjo, Joy
US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo's iconic poem "Remember,"illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Michaela Goade, invites young readers to pause and reflect on the wonder of the world around them, and to remember the importance of their place in it. Remember the sky you were born under,<...
I sang you down from the stars
Spillett-Sumner, Tasha
A New York Times bestseller! A Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Book This unique baby book sings with Native cultural detail, while striking a universal chord in its celebration of the blossoming of love that comes with...
Sharice's big voice : a native kid becomes a congresswoman
Davids, Sharice
This acclaimed picture book autobiography tells the triumphant story of Sharice Davids, one of the first Native American women elected to Congress, and the first LGBTQ congressperson to represent Kansas. When Sharice Davids was young, she never thought she'd be in Congress....
Still this love goes on
Sainte-Marie, Buffy
A New York Times / New York Public Library Best Illustrated Children's Book of 2022! NAMED A BEST PICTURE BOOK OF THE YEAR: Kirkus Reviews, Globe and Mail, and Chicago Public Library "A love letter to family, home, and Indigenous traditions. . . This story...
We all play = Kimêtawânaw
Flett, Julie
A BEST CHILDREN'S BOOK OF THE YEAR: New York Times, Washington Post, New York Public Library, Kirkus Reviews, Globe and Mail, Horn Book, and Boston Globe STARRED Reviews in Kirkus, Publisher's Weekly, The Horn...
We are grateful : otsaliheliga
Sorell, Traci
2019 Sibert Honor Book 2019 Orbis Pictus Honor Book NPR's Guide To 2018's Great Reads 2018 BookLaunchAward (SCBWI) Kirkus ReviewsBest Books of 2018 School Library JournalBest Books of 2018 2018 JLG selection 2019 Reading...
We are water protectors
Lindstrom, Carole
Winner of the 2021 Caldecott Medal #1 New York Times Bestseller Inspired by the many Indigenous-led movements across North America, We Are Water Protectors issues an urgent rallying cry to safeguard the Earth's water from harm and corruption--a bold and...
We Belong to the DrumMistikwaskihk Kitipêyimikonaw
Lamouche, Sandra
The drum represents the heartbeat of Mother Earth. We all belong to the earth and we all belong to the drum. Nikosis grew up going to powwows with his family, happily immersed in music, dance and the sounds of the drum. But when he starts going to daycare, he doesn't feel like he belongs....
We sang you home
Van Camp, Richard
A celebration of the bond between parent and child, this is the perfect song to share with your little ones. In this sweet and lyrical picture book from the creators of the bestselling Little You, gentle rhythmic text captures the wonder new parents feel as they welcome baby into the...
When we are kind
Gray Smith, Monique
"Notably centering Indigenous families and characters of color in personal and communal activities--and encouraging readers to evaluate their actions toward others."--Publishers Weekly When We Are Kindcelebrates simple acts of everyday kindness and encourages children to explore how they...
Zoe and the fawn
Jameson, Catherine
Zoe and her father are delighted to come across a fawn in the forest. But the fawn is alone--where is its mother? Join Zoe on her quest for the deer, as she encounters animals and learns their Okanagan (syilx) names along the way. Repetition of phrased questions will enhance success for...

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